Wednesday, May 04, 2005
Nuclear Fictions

The Trident nuclear programme is beginning to near the end of its life and the question of Britain's continued 'great power status' is coming into view. One could view the mutual assistance pact with the United States as an outsourcing agreement for nuclear weaponry but a question mark must hang over this continued cooperation given the greater influence of Europe and the dissension that it stirs. We know that the mutual assistance pact may foster the illusion of power but that dependence has hollowed out the willingness of our elite to act in our name. It forms one part of the crutch that hobbles our defences; the other and greater support upon which we lean is Europe.

This sets the stage for the leak to the Independent that presents Blair as a hawk maintaining Britain's nuclear deterrent (deterring whom? The French?). With singular alacrity, newspapers then drag in a case of the TBGBs.

Gordon Brown has refused to commit himself to supporting Tony Blair's plans to renew Britain's Trident nuclear weapons system.

Mr Brown appeared to duck the issue on Channel Four News when he was challenged about yesterday's report in The Independent that Mr Blair had agreed in principle to replace the Trident system.

The Prime Minister confirmed yesterday that he wants Britain to retain its independent nuclear deterrent when the Trident submarine fleet reaches the end of its natural life.

Asked whether it was right to replace it, Mr Brown said: "Well, as Tony Blair says a decision has not been made. We have to look at the facts and the figures first."

However, Blair contradicted his earlier positive stance with a statement that any new system would have to be costed. What he meant to say was that it would be controlled elsewhere.


Post a Comment

Blog Archive